Cover Image: At the End of Everything

At the End of Everything

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Member Reviews

Trapped inside a juvenile detention center when a plague breaks out (not Covid but similar), the chapters are about different characters and how they learn to survive through it,
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I read this book as an ARC and this is my review. I believe this book is extremely important in our world today. It deals with the daily handling of issues like trans genders, gender equality and racial equality. It also takes place in a treatment center with non-caring staff. The subject is timely - a pandemic with the population masked and in lockdown. I loved this book also because it was unputdownable - I wanted to read it all night long! I recommend this story to anyone who enjoys a psychological thriller with incredible characters.
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Thank you for my early review copy.  I thoroughly enjoyed this book.  I believe this book will be a huge bestseller.
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At The End of Everything was a book I was prepared to dislike immensely. The beginning of the book did not endear most of the children of Hope Juvenile Treatment Center to me in anyway. I almost set this book down and walked away…. but I am so glad I didn’t. In an eerily similar to current events story, the plague hits the country and panic ensues. The children from Hope are left to their own devices. Treated like they are disposable, the adults all just walk away. Left to find food and medical supplies, the children learn quickly and through pure ingenuity— they find the will to survive. The children show determination and such character growth that they begin to worm their way into your heart. By the end of the book, you are celebrating their wins and grieving their losses in such a way that the book becomes something you are so glad you didn’t miss. My voluntary, unbiased review is based upon a review copy from NetGalley.
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This was an okay Young Adult Dystopia book. I liked the premise of it, where young adults are in the Hope Treatment center and something happens and the adults all leave.
Here is what I wish...I wish that the young adults had more fully developed back stories. We get glimpses, but the book would have been so much richer if the reader knew about why each one of the teenagers were in the treatment facility in the first place.
Second, I wish that we didn't find out what was happening till a third of the way into the book. I wish that we had more nuance then the guards and the warden leaving AND THEN we find out why.
I wish that there was some build up to what was going on outside of Hope Treatment.
Third, I absolutely hated the pronouns for Emerson. Because the reader never got a full picture of his/her background, it was absolutely a drag to read THEY/THEM/THEIR constantly. I could not get a full description of what they looked or why they ended up at Hope.

This book has so much potential. Just a bit MORE was needed to make this a blockbuster hit of the autumn.
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At the end of everything is a good book to good here in the middle of Covid. Just like all of Nijkamps books, there is so much you don’t see coming. There were a few characters I did not love, but overall the book was good.
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It's a good thing the story has a warning at the beginning because I definitely think anyone that reads it needs to be aware. The concept of the story is that teenagers in a juvenile lockup center are unaware at the beginning of what is going on as the world shuts down due to a pandemic.

I felt a very Lord of the Flies connection with a more modern storyline. Instead of the group of young people being trapped on an island this time they're trapped in a facility. But the same type of hierarchies exist.

I personally did not enjoy this story but I definitely can see others liking this type of thriller. If you were going to place it in a school library I definitely think it should be limited to the older students with the librarian being aware of who's taking it out.
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2.5 stars rounded up to 3. What an uncomfortable reading experience; I don't mean that in a negative way but it brought back all my fears and feelings about the pandemic, which still isn't over. It wasn't groundbreaking but I do appreciate how YA authors l create worlds that are expansive even if this was a bit two dimensional. If you still have anxiety over COVID I'd recommend skipping but if you can read about something similar and have abit of Hope, this is a good one to try. But also, I'm disturbed by the idea of forgotten children in the middle of the Ozarks during a plague
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Marieke Nijkamp does it again with another fabulous read!

This book had me hooked once I began. A number of unruly, troublesome teenagers are homed at the Hope Juvenile Treatment Centre. There are guards who supervise their daily goings-on, the youngsters at the Centre have a daily schedule they have to adhere to, rules they must follow, set times for lights on/lights off, regularly scheduled meal times, school time, therapy time, etc.

The story unfolds from various POV's of the teens' residing at the Centre. I enjoyed reading from their various points of view as it allows us to get a back story of their lives, what their upbringing was like, their families, what trouble they seemed to get into that brought them to the Centre in the first place, their personalities, etc.

First there are girls, Logan and Leah-siblings at the Centre that are very close to one another. They have their own unique way of communicating with one another, since Logan is unable to speak. Next meet Emerson-the "new kid" at the Centre. Emerson is non-binary and goes by they/them. Then we meet Grace-she has anger issues, but will stand up for friends and what she believes in. There are several more teens in the novel at the Centre and we learn a little about all of them in turn. One night the teens notice that there are no guards, no adults at the Centre anywhere. Confused, they go about the Centre trying to figure out what is going on. Did the guards all just up and vanish, disappear? What is going on?

What unfolds is fast-paced and suspenseful. I enjoyed flipping through the pages to see what exactly was going on and what would happen next. I mean, to have all the guards at the Centre suddenly disappear without a trace is definitely weird and strange. I enjoyed this novel and the several main characters that we are introduced to. All the characters had their own unique strengths and weaknesses. Some were likeable and some not so much.

A good novel that I would recommend.
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~At the End of Everything~

The Hope Juvenile Treatment Centre is supposed to rehabilitate troublesome teens. In reality, the centre is just a prison for these abandoned delinquents. With a rigid schedule, guards constantly patrolling, and your usual group of bullies, the teens at Hope would do anything to get out of there. Then one day, the guards, teachers, therapists, fail to show up. Everyone seems to have just disappeared out of thin air. What seems like a stroke of luck at first, a chance to escape, quickly becomes something much more sinister. When the teens decide to venture outside, they come face to face with a group of soldiers refusing to let them leave. Turns out there is a deadly virus spreading, a plague, and no one is allowed to leave their homes. Which means the teens are forced to stay in the one place they never wanted to call home. Hope. 
As supplies start to dwindle, and the virus finds its way into the centre, the group is forced to make life changing decisions. Above all else, they must learn to live with the fact that they’ve been abandoned. Or more precisely, forgotten. 
When I first read the description for this book, I immediately decided to request it on NetGalley. Abandoned teens in an apocalyptic setting? Yes please. This book was an incredibly interesting read, and like all books has it’s pros and cons. I personally really enjoyed the fact that each chapter was a different person's point of view. Seeing inside the mind of the different characters, and seeing how differently they reacted to situations, was very fascinating. I also really appreciated the way the author documented phone calls between characters and their families, and documented information on the virus. I feel like these small details added very nice touches to the book. However, the one thing that I feel could have been done differently was the buildup of the plot. The idea of this book itself was phenomenal, and I liked the way the author touched on important topics such as transphobia, racism, and ableism. While these are all incredibly serious topics that should be addressed, I feel like the focus of the book became just about these issues. As a result, there was no actual climax of the book, just small events and then a conclusion. Overall, I appreciate that the author brought to light such important topics.

Genre: Young adult/Thriller
Age: 13+
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐/5
Release date: January 4th, 2022
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I had high hopes for this one but unfortunately it fell short. Firstly, there were too many characters. It became confusing and hard to keep up. Second, it felt like I barely got to know the characters. They were hard to connect to for that reason. Lastly, it just felt like a lot was left out.
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Apocalyptic! I loved this thriller about an outbreak spreading throughout the world and no where is safe. These kids are broken and young. They are troubled and yet they have to survive. Talk about all the therapy they will need after this one...
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This book sounded intriguing and I am a fan of YA. However, I ended up not finishing this book at 41%. The plague was a bit too much to read about given our current climate. Also, I had trouble connecting with the characters. I did like the format of multiple POVs as well as the phone calls and online articles throughout.
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At the End of Everything by Marieke Nijkamp was overall pretty good. The story started strong, and I was excited to keep reading; however, the story begins to drag after the first several chapters, and I found myself wanting just to be done with reading it. The ending was sad, but good and the idea and premise of the book were intriguing and thoughtful. I will try other books by this author.

A 3.4 out of 5 stars.
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I've avoided reading any end of the world and certainly any pandemic type books through 2020 and 2021. But this looked to be more than that and it was. While the pandemic is clearly central,  the characters and their stories were worth the read. If you just can't yet, bookmark it as a good read when you are ready.
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3.5 stars

This was less of the thrilling, exciting survival story and more of a realistic take on the pandemic currently happening and a commentary on the discrimination in the justice system. I still thought it was a good story and I wanted to see the kids in the treatment center make it through, I just hoped for more action.

There are three main characters: Logan, who is in the facility with her twin Leah. She is mute and has her own sign language with her sister, but when Leah gets sick, Logan is adrift and unsure how to continue.
Grace is the de facto leader of the group that stays behind when things go bad. She isn't sure what the right thing is to do and is suddenly responsible for twenty kids' lives.
Emerson is a newcomer to the facility. They have been bullied and treated poorly for being non binary and are trying to make friends and reconcile their feeling on faith.

I felt like the character development was pretty well done and the inclusion of phone call transcripts and inventory lists helped give this a realistic feel. I would have liked to see more obstacles for the kids, like people trying to break into the facility or more dissent among the characters. This is still an interesting story and particularly relatable right now.

I voluntarily read and reviewed this book. Thank you to Sourcebooks Fire and NetGalley for the copy.
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Thank you to NetGalley for providing an eARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. 

I'm a big fan of some of Marieke Nijkamp's other writing. She always has a sharp, readable style and gives wonderful character details that create a vivid world in my mind as I read. 

These attributes were noticeable in this book as well. The story started off so strong and the descriptions and style made me feel like I was right there in the action. However, in my opinion, the story dragged throughout the middle and the end. While the writing was still quite good, I simply found myself losing interest in the plot. 

All that being said, I would definitely still read her next book! But this one didn't quite do it for me.
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I have absolutely loved every one of Marieke Nijkamp’s books. This one hit very close to home for obvious reasons and was hard to read at times. It was interesting to see a similar pandemic through the eyes of characters.
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Juvenile offenders and society misfits have been sent to The Hope Juvenile Treatment Center to serve their time.  This is a rough place for all and the care is minimum. Existence survives on routine. 
Suddenly the guards are leaving, no explanation and no instructions for the youth left behind.  Venturing outside the walls of the center in an effort to get back to their families they are met with violence. The youth are ordered to go back to the center as there is a pandemic in town and the town people are sick and dying.
The story now becomes a journey of survival. 

I could not help but hope for each of these characters. 

I enjoyed the novel as I have enjoyed all others from this author.  This was filled with pandemic concerns, worry and panic and still the core survival instinct remained strong.  

The book is written from the voice of alternating characters. The author has once again perfectly crafted a story that includes all.

I was gripped from the first page and really appreciated the trigger warning being placed at the front of the book.  This allows the reader to choose to read the book without being surprised by the content, 

Thank you NetGalley and Sourcebooks for the electronic ARC in exchange for my honest review.
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Thank you NetGalley for this eARC in exchange for my honest review.

The Hope Juvenile Treatment Center is "home" for misunderstood teenage delinquents. When all of the supervisors and guards disappear one day, the teens are suspicious. A few leave the center to try to find out what happened and discover that there's been a world wide pandemic. People are getting sick and dying. Everyone is on lockdown and quarantined. After a violent confrontation with the military, half the teens led by Hunter, the center's top bad boy, leave the center and the other half stay with Grace, who has anger issues but is strong enough to take charge for those who stay. The teens at Hope build a community and take care of one another in such a hard and confusing time. There are a lot of character development and I love that this book is written in multiple POV's. I think the pandemic story line definitely hits close to our new way of life. At the End of Everything is an addictive and sad book. Nijkamp provoked a mixture of unsettling feelings as I read and I loved it.
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